I am sure that if you are a frequent traveler then you probably have a checklist ready with all the items you need to take with you like your shampoo, sunblock creams, gadgets etc. But do you have a cybersecurity checklist ready too? While traveling you have to use the public Wi-Fi at airports, train stations, cafes and other public places.
But did you know that with 90% tourists and visitors using these free Wi-Fi facilities, there are 10% malicious actors or hackers that use these same services. When a threat actor logs on to the public Wi-Fi, they try to get a hold of unsuspecting tourist devices and steal their valuable information which can be encashed later. This checklist is to prepare you and your
devices for any such threats that can hamper your security and privacy.
What You Need To Do Before You Travel?
First Step: Keep Your Devices Updated
Make sure all of your equipment is up to date before you start your journey. Your laptop, tablet, and smartphone are all included in this. Important security fixes that shield your devices from the most recent threats are frequently included in updates. Cybercriminals are constantly searching for flaws in obsolete software that they can exploit to take control of your devices. You strengthen your first line of defense against these threats by keeping your gadgets updated. We have all had times when an update went awry, and that is the last thing you want to happen just before you leave. I would advise against waiting until the very last minute to do this.
Second Step: Protect Your Home Router
If you don’t need your router for smart home devices while you’re away from home, you might choose to switch it off. For cybercriminals, an idle router can be an easy target. You may prevent hackers from using it as a point of entry into your home network by turning it off. If you must keep it on, be sure that its firmware is current and that it is protected with a strong, one-of-a-kind password.
Third Step: Make Two-Factor Authentication Available
Your online accounts have an additional degree of security thanks to two-factor authentication (2FA). To access your accounts, you need more than just a password; you also need a second factor, typically a code given to your phone. As a result, even if someone gets hold of your password or guesses it, they won’t be able to get into your account minus the second factor.
Fourth Step: Watch Out for Phishing Scams
Any unexpected emails or messages requesting personal information should be avoided. In order to mislead you into disclosing your personal information, scammers frequently step up their phishing attempts during peak travel seasons by impersonating airlines or travel agents. Before clicking any links or sending any information, always confirm the sender’s authenticity.
Fifth Step: Use A VPN
A Virtual Private Network helps users to mask their IP addresses and make all their online activities safe and secure. When someone browses or streams content online using a VPN, no one can identify which website is being visited. When using a public Wi-Fi network, it is mandatory to use a VPN service for your own safety. So that even if there are hackers with prying eyes, they would not be able to get a hold of you or your online activity.
Also Read: 7 Best VPNs for School and College in 2023
Sixth Step: Install Antivirus Software
This tip is pretty obvious and whether you travel or not, your PC must have a powerful real-time antivirus software. You can never find out how a virus enters a system despite all the protective firewalls installed. Hence, as a second line of defense, a real-time antivirus always protects your PC from virus and malware. Here, we suggest T9 antivirus software that is a real time antivirus app that offers exploit protection. It also includes an ad blocker extension while browsing the internet and a startup manager that helps boot your PC faster.
Seventh Step: Make a Data Backup
Backup your data from your devices before leaving. This action can be performed to a cloud service or an external hard drive. Your vital data and pictures will still be available to you even if your smartphone is lost or stolen. Additionally, regular backups shield you from data loss brought on by hardware malfunctions or virus infestations.
The Final Word On Cybersecurity Checklist For Safe Travel
That brings us to the end of the checklist for safe travel. The world of cybersecurity is always evolving which means, with all the security measures present today, there is an evil genius trying to invent something new to infiltrate your security and privacy for personal gain. So, keep updating yourself and your software if you wish to stay cyber safe.
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